So I've been doing more tuning on the car over the past few days. Each time, I used the Corvette as my comparison. On Thursday, the car could of course beat it out of the hole, but the C5 would quickly catch up and pass it. Not a good sign. So I went back and worked on it some more. I found and fixed some problems and did more testing. By Friday it still wasn't keeping up with the Corvette, but I took it down to a hotrodder hangout anyway. I sent out scouts to sniff for a race, but couldn't get ANY takers at all. Everyone heard the car rumbling its way into the lot and nobody would touch it. Still, it was a fun night to hang out.

Saturday I put more time into it, looking for why it was lagging the Vette and running rich. I found a loose wire to the O2 sensor and burned off a bunch of soot on it. My initial test drives said it was a definite improvement, so late Saturday evening I lined up the Vette with it again to see. Finally, it beat the Vette hands down. Time to go back to the hotrodder hangout. :)

Once again my arrival didn't go unnoticed, and a crowd had gathered in interest. After some small talk I sent out more scouts to find a challenger, but couldn't find one. Then, one came back and told me a guy with an 03 Z06 was up for it. I went over to talk to him, and he said he would do it if he could run with his traction control system on, and he wanted to put $25 on it. I declined on the cash but agreed to let him use his TCS.

We proceeded to the strip, with a couple other cars in tow. He took a warm-up run with a new Mustang Cobra and beat him by a comfortable margin. I got lined up and waited. The Z06 came back and lined up next to me, and the hands fell.

The Fiero launched hard and took off, getting an early lead with minimal drama - little more than a tire chirp off the line. The Z06 did a lot of spinning and smoking, just as he had against the Cobra, and I was already two car lengths ahead by the time he got enough traction to try to catch up. It was too late by then. The ZZ430 comes on cam at about 3500rpm and it's like having secondaries, the thrust builds all the way to its current 6300rpm redline. Shift to second and the tires chirp in momentary protest, the engine stays in its powerband back to redline. Shift to third and the fun continues across the finish line. I beat him by at least two carlengths - I watched him the whole time in my rearview mirror. Game over.

I went back to the hangout but the Z06 wasn't there. I guess I'd sent him packing. I felt kinda bad for a while for laying a fellow Corvette owner to waste with a Fiero, but it was otherwise too satisfying for that feeling to last long.

I also had an impromptu race with a late model Grand Prix GTP while I was leading a bunch of cars over to the strip. The driver was a young kid who surprised me when I wasn't even expecting a race until I heard his blower wind up as the light turned green. So I punched it and walked away from him as well. At the next light we rolled the windows down and he yelled over, "That was sick! My boost is cranked up and I couldn't even keep up with you! What the hell do you have in there?!"

I just smiled and drove off.

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